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By Jonathan Pena  | for Apple Tell

Apple has been highlighting features of the forthcoming iOS 6 for many months now, and today, at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, many journalists and consumers are waiting to see what Apple will unveil. Tons of leaked pictures of the rumored iPhone 5 cases, 4-inch screen panels, and connector jacks have appeared on the Applet web, and we gathered them in our iPhone 5 rumor roundup.

The iPhone 5 will be unveiled at 10:00 am PST (1:00 pm EST) at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, and Apple Tell (a TeleRead sister site) will be running a live blog of the event.

Here, however, I’ll take a more detailed look at what I feel are the most believable rumors from the past few months, and offer my opinions on what will happen at today’s Apple event.

Form Factor:

Apple last year it announced the iPhone 4S, and many were a bit disappointed since it looked exactly the iPhone 4. This year, you can expect a different look to the new iPhone 5; the pictures and rumors so far show a taller (if not thinner) phone.

A recent leak showed an alleged iPhone 5 back-plate featuring bigger speaker grills, a smaller dock connector, and a four inch screen display and new chassis with brushed aluminum back instead of the glass panel. Many rumors that showed an iPhone 5 fully assembled estimates that the new iPhone will be 1.7mm thinner than the current iPhone 4S.

New Processor:

Apple's A6 chip may come to iOS devicesApple has always amazed us when it comes to the iPhone’s processor upgrades. When Apple announced the iPhone 4, they demoed their first A4 chip developed in collaboration with Samsung. Since then, Apple has continued to introduce more advanced CPU processors like the A5X chip in the third-gen iPad, capable of delivering quad-core graphics.

And with this year’s new iPhone, we could see a entire road-map of Apple’s new mobile chip design with the A6 chip. There are even leaked photos that show the new internal chip-set, for the A6. According to analysts, the new CPU will be based on S5L8950X design, which will be quad-core capable.

Support for 4G/LTE:

Apple's 4G iPhoneMany rumors in the past painted a big cloud of doubt as to whether Apple will ever implement the 4G LTE compatibility in any of their future iOS devices. Yet, this year Apple marked a new milestone with its new third-generation iPad that was the first iOS device to run on the 4G LTE service. Now, it’s the iPhone 5′s turn, which could become Apple’s first 4G smartphone.

And now, a report in the The Wall Street Journal confirms that the iPhone 5 will be receiving the same 4G LTE capable chip upgrade as the New iPad.

Small Dock Connector:

USB 9-pin cable

The current iPhone dock has used the same 30-pin connector since its introduction in 2007. Now, reports from several news media outlets (including the Wall Street Journal and Reuters) claim that the new iPhone dock connector will be a smaller 9-pin model. Add to these reports the recent discovery made in a string of code within the iOS 6 beta revealing that Apple most likely is testing devices with that rumored 9-pin dock.

Finally, images of an apparent Apple USB cable set have surfaced that seem to confirm the rumors that Apple will opt for a smaller dock connector on the next iPhone.

Screen Size:

Apple has remained in its comfort zone when it comes to the size of the iPhone’s 3.5 inch display, and has barely made any upgrades since the original iPhone. Consensus now is that that Apple will increase the display size to a 4-inch screen, and it will be sporting a new in-cell technology to deliver a thinner and brighter screen, catching up with the many rivaling companies who are releasing taller devices with bigger displays like the 4.8-inch display Samsung Galaxy S3.

Several reports from The Wall Street Journal and Sharp confirm the new Apple iPhone device will definitely be sporting a larger 4-inch display screen. And let’s not forget about the countless number of images that have been leaked to the Internet, all suggesting that Apple will indeed be increasing the size of the device.

Camera:

iPhone 5Apple has made an evolutionary step with the iPhone’s camera technology from iPhone 3GS, 4, and 4S; every year, the company increases the megapixel count. Several analysts have suggested that while the competition (such as HTC/Nokia) has increased the camera size to 12MP on their mobile devices to compete with the Apple’s iPhone, Apple will keep its new iPhone with the same 8MP camera like the iPhone 4S. But it will have an upgraded back-illuminated sensor from Sony capable of delivering brighter photos in dark low-lighting settings.

Price:

Apple has more or less kept prices the same every year, and we should expect that to remain firm. In the United States, the iPhone 4S came in at $199 for the 16GB model, $299 for the 32GB model, and $399 for the 64GB, on a two-year deal contract with carriers. A recent report at The Telegraph reveals that prices will stay steady.

iOS 6:

While many details were unveiled at WWDC 2012, iOS 6 has plenty of features that haven’t been fully explored. We’ve covered some of those details extensively throughout our reports, including the loss of the YouTube App and improvements to the App Store.

iOS 6

Many are anxious to see Apple’s new Maps application with built-in turn-by-turn navigation, and to see if it might rival Google’s own map services. There’s also Apple’s Passbook, a new app in iOS 6 that works like a mobile wallet that allows its users to store and access electronic versions of all their movie tickets, boarding passes, and merchant cards in one convenient place.

Expect to see more details of iOS 6 at this event, and we could get an official launch date. As with many previous Apple events, it will probably debut a few days before the iPhone 5 hits store shelves. More substantial rumors indicate the release of iOS 6 could be around a week or two from the event. The most solid reports to date point towards September 21.

New iPods And iTunes v11:

While the media will be focused on the new iPhone, Apple is also expected to announce new iPod products. As recent rumors predict, Apple could unveil a new iPod touch, an iPod nano and an iPod shuffle. The biggest upgrade is expected to be centered on the new iPod touch with a bigger 4-inch screen display, a faster processor, an improved rear camera, and possibly even Siri capability.

And concerning reports of a new iTunes version 11, not much could be said about that. Recent stories in the press offer only that the next version of iTunes will include some sort of Pandora radio streaming functionality and will remove Apple’s Ping service.

We’re just over three hours away from seeing Apple take the wraps off its next-gen iPhone, and while nothing can be certain, we can look forward to seeing new iPhone hardware at the event, and probably new iPods as well.

Be sure to join us a bit before 10:00 am PST (1:00 pm EST) on Wednesday, September 12 (that’s today!) for our Apple iPhone 5 Media Event live blog.

 
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